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A few days after his arrival at Capri, a fisherman coming up to him unexpectedly, when he was desirous of privacy, and presenting him with a large mullet, he ordered the man's face to be scrubbed with the fish; being terrified with the thought of his having been able to creep upon him from the back of the island, over such rugged and steep rocks. The man, while undergoing the punishment, expressing his joy that he had not likewise offered him a large crab which he had also taken, he ordered his face to be farther lacerated with its claws. He put to death one of the pretorian guards, for having stolen a peacock out of his orchard. In one of his journeys, his litter being obstructed by some bushes, he ordered the officer whose duty it was to ride on and examine the road, a centurion of the first cohorts, to be laid on his face upon the ground, and scourged almost to death.
During the whole time of his seclusion at Capri, twice only he made an effort to visit Rome. Once he came in a galley as far as the gardens near the Naumachia, but placed guards along the banks of the Tiber, to keep off all who should offer to come to meet him. The second time he travelled on the Appian way, So called from Appius Claudius, the Censor, one of Tiberius's ancestors, who constructed it. It took a direction southward from Rome, through Campania to 'Brundusium, starting from what is the present Porta di San Sebastiano, from which the road to Naples takes its departure. as far as the seventh mile-stone from the city, but he immediately returned, without entering it, having only taken a view of the walls at a distance. For what reason he did not disembark in his first excursion, is uncertain; but in the last, he was deterred from entering the city by a prodigy. He was in the habit of diverting himself with a snake, and upon going to feed it with his own hand, according to c
Meanwhile, finding, upon looking over the acts of the senate, "that some person under prosecution had been discharged, without being brought to a hearing," for he had only written cursorily that they had been denounced by an informer; he complained in a great rage that he was treated with contempt, and resolved at all hazards to return to Capri; not daring to attempt any thing until he found himself in a place of security. But being detained by storms, and the increasing violence of his disorder, he died shortly afterwards, at a villa formerly belonging to Lucullus, in the seventy-eighth year of his age, Tacitus agrees with Suetonius as to the age of Tiberius at the time of his death. Dio states it more precisely, as being seventy-seven years, four months, and nine days. and the twenty-third of his reign, upon the seventeenth of the calends of April [i6th March], in the consulship of Cneius Acerronius Proculus and Caius Pontius Niger. Some think that a slow-consuming poison was give
Upon his last birth-day, he had brought a full-sized statue of the Timenian Apollo from Syracuse, a work of exquisite art, intending to place it in the library of the new temple;In the temple of the Palatine Apollo. See AUGUSTUS, c. xxix. but he dreamt that the god appeared to him in the night, and assured him "that his statue could not be erected by him." A few days before he died, the Pharos at Capri was thrown down by an earthquake. And at Misenum, some embers and live coals, which were brought in to warm his apartment, went out, and after being quite cold, burst out into a flame again towards evening, and continued burning very brightly for several hours.
He likewise attended his father in his expedition to Syria. After his return, he lived first with his mother, and, when she was banished, with his great-granrmother, Livia Augusta, in praise of whom, after her decease, though then only a boy, he pronounced a funeral oration in the Rostra. He was then transferred to the family of his grandmother Antonia, and afterwards, in the twentieth year of his age, being called by Tiberius to Capri, he in one and the same day assumed the manly habit, and shaved his beard, but without receiving any of the honours which had been paid to his brothers on a similar oeeasien. While he remained in that island, many insidious artifices were practised, to extort from him complaints against Tiberius, but by his circumspection he avoided falling into the snare. In c. liv. of TIBERIUS, we have seen that his brothers Drusus and Nero fell a sacrifice to these artifices. He affected to take no more notice of the ill-treatment of his relations, than if nothin
But he could not even then conceal his natural disposition to cruelty and lewdness. He delighted in witnessing the inflictions of punishments, and frequented tavernsand bawdy-houses in the night-time, disguised in a periwig -and a long coat; and was passionately addicted to the theatrical arts of singing and dancing. All these levities Tiberius readily connived at, in hopes that they might perhaps correct the roughness of his temper, which the sagacious old man so well understood, that he often said, "That Caius was destined to be the ruin of himself and all mankind; and that he was rearing a hydraNatriceus, a water-snake, so called from nato, to swim. The allusion is probably to Caligula's being reared in the island of Capri. for the people of Rome, and a Phaeton for all the world. A Phaeton is said to have set the world on fire.